“Auld Lang Syne” means “times long past” from a poem of that title by the Scottish poet Robert Burns. And now we both know.
1. CAP OFF A CAREER
The University of Texas Longhorn marching band pays tribute to outgoing coach Mack Brown during halftime of last night’s 30-7 Alamo Bowl loss to Oregon by spelling his name. The band similarly feted outgoing athletic director DeLoss Dodds at halftime of their last home game. Sometimes the handwriting is not on the wall, per se.
2. Southern 1116,
Champions Baptist College 12
Check out this box score. The Tigers shot 3 for 44 and even when Southern did not have a hand in their faces, shot 5 of 17 (29.4%) from the free throw line. They were outrebounded 69-22 and finished with just one assist. So why was this school, who fell behind before their first point by an NCAA-record score of 44-0, participating in an NCAA basketball game?
The school, located in Hot Springs, Ark., is a member of the Association of Christian College Athletics (ACCA) and has an enrollment of 250 students. The Tigers have actually won three ACCA championships in the past six seasons.
I think we’ve got to arrange a game between the Tigers and St. Katherine College, and soon.
But isn’t it odd how the NCAA will sanction a cross-country runner for participating in a 5-K fun run, how it has the investigative tentacles to do that, but it will go Pontius Pilate on scheduling war crimes? Both in hoops and football?
3. Music Makes the People Come Together
So Madonna was right after all.
Here is a list of the “100 Most Followed People on Twitter.”
Of the Top 100, 57 are musicians.
No. 1 is Katy Perry, whose boyfriend, John Mayer, good-naturedly hacked her feed last night at a Fleetwood Mac concert in Las Vegas.
There are actually more people associated with the original “American Idol” staff (Ryan Seacrest, Simon Cowell) and certainly more Kardashians (three) than there are current American athletes (LeBron James, and that’s it) on the Top 100 List.
Does that mean music is 57 times more popular than American sports? Not necessarily. As my Twitter followers (I mean that in the technical sense of the word; not like I’m a prophet, yo) pointed out, that just illustrates the demographic that’s on Twitter.
Which brings me to another point: Is there a more advertiser-coveted demographic than the same people who slobber over One Direction and the Kardashians? So why would anyone dare say that Twitter’s stock will not be hotter than Jamal Crawford when he’s on a jag?
Curiously, at least to me, the most followed actor on Twitter? Jim Carrey.
4. Who Wants To Go To Fire Lake?
(Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band shout-out)
Five NFL coaches get fired yesterday, Black Monday, because the very rich are very different from you and I. As Pink Funk tweeted, “Do I have to wake up early for Black Monday and what type of discounts are available?” (I think she mostly tweeted that).
The Tampa Bay Bucs will now have had four head coaches in the past seven seasons, the Cleveland Browns five. Which is to say that a few NFL owners are Captain Von Trapp, their coaches the governess carousel, and their players Liesel and the kids. When that many coaches consistently fail, it’s on you, Mr. Owner. Either you are terrible at the hiring process, or you don’t give your hires enough slack so that the children respect them. Either way, it’s the owner’s fault. If only they could fire themselves.
5. “And It’s Not Even Close…” Update
Remember about 10 days ago when Yahoo! Sports NBA guru Adrian Wojnarowski tweeted that Charlotte Bobcat first-year coach Steve Clifford was the “Coach of the Year and it’s not even close?” And, listen, like you, I have tremendous respect for every (other) NBA-related item to drop from Woj’s keyboard.
Well, last night the Phoenix Suns won their 10th game in 12 contests, destroying the Clippers at Staples by 19 –Phoenix led by 29 at the start of the fourth quarter. The Suns are now 19-11. Charlotte lost at home to the Utah Jazz, who have the worst record (10-24) in the Western Conference.
We’re only 30 games in, but I’m feeling pretty good about Jeff Hornacek over Clifford at this stage.
Louisville parts ways with Chane Behanan, a starter on last April’s national championship team. The six-foot-six junior, according to coach Rick Pitino, “just did not do the right things (off the court), over and over and over.”
Keep that in mind, Louisville students, if you find yourselves in trouble with the university for any reason. Be sure to inquire about the school’s “over and over and over” policy.
Grantland stages a “Who Won 2013?” single-elimination tournament. Terrific idea, but too many apps/gadgets in the field for my liking. Where’s Sandra Bullock versus Robert Redford? Where’s Vladimir Putin versus Bashar al-Assad? Where’s Kevin Ware versus Anderson Silva?
There Are No Insignificant Jobs Hedge Fund. You can’t improve on that hed.
Crystal Blue Persuasion
I wondered aloud last night, while watching the “Breaking Bald” marathon, if one could piece together how to cook meth if you were to studiously watch all the episodes…asking for a friend. The best reply came from Lynn Huber, who said that one could “IMPROVE their cook.” And then loyal reader Jacob Anstey sent me this article.
How far away are we from an “ESPN Tebow” channel? Yes, the correct answer is we’ve already been there.
My man at SI, Richard Deitsch (Deitsch and “leisure” are two rare words that put “e” before “i” without following “c) asks sports personages who will be THE sports name of 2014.
* What book is that from? Answer below.
I love this article in the Business section of the New York Post. And if you are wondering why I’m not filthy rich, it’s because I’m getting my business news from the Post, perhaps?
Anyway, after TWTR stock falls 13% in a couple of days, from $74 to $63 (it later fell to $59), the Post talks to analyst Benjamin Schacter, who downgraded the company. Schacter notes that other analysts, as he did, will downgrade TWTR from HOLD to SELL and the author, Josh Kosman, notes in passing that Schacter’s original price target was $46 (the stock opened, realistically, at its IPO for $45; the VIPs got in at $26).
Then there’s this quote from Schacter: “While we are quite bullish on Twitter’s potential, we highlight that it takes time and people to execute against opportunities.”
A few points, if I may, and I encourage you to please help me if I’m missing something.
1) We’ve got an analyst who’s paid to be accurate, who put a price target of $46 on a stock that quickly shot up, in less than two months, to $74. Might there not be some professional self-preservation on his behalf to see TWTR tank some? So by him putting a SELL tag on it, and getting the industry wondering if its over-bought, then might he be stoking the embers for the stock to plummet, thereby helping himself look less foolish?
2) Schacter himself points out that he is “bullish” on the stock. So, fine, wait for a dip. But if you are bullish on a stock and it has just fallen 13% in three days, could there possibly EVER BE A BETTER TIME to buy it? I’m just asking.
Today is the last day of the year. TWTR opened at $61.65. AAPL opened at $554.
If both of those stocks are not up 10% by this time next year, which is a higher percentage than almost every hedge fund would promise its investors, I will eat my hat (TWTR could be up that much just by the end of today.) Fortunately for me, I do have a hat made entirely of lemon meringue pie. Mmmmm.
Just go back and look at where Google was five years ago (‘$307, now $1,110). Where Apple was ($93, now $560). Where Amazon was ($52, now $396). Where Facebook was last year. None of these companies are going away. They’re only going to grow.
Full disclosure: I own TWTR so my persuading you to purchase it could be seen as self-serving. In fact, it’s ENTIRELY self-serving. However, I would never suggest it if it was not also going to benefit you. Look at that previous paragraph again. I’m like the guy in the AT&T ads: It’s not complicated.
Answer: “The Official Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.”
Stay away from the idiot box today. You’ve got a lot of football watching ahead of you tomorrow, so you might want to give it a break tonight. Unless of course you decide to watch the “Walking Dead” marathon on AMC.